Publication Date

Fall 2012

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Kevin Jordan


aviation psychology, eye-tracking, NextGen

Subject Areas

Experimental psychology; Psychology


The Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) is comprised of concepts and technology that will help change the national airspace system. In the current experiment, we analyzed eye-tracking in a NextGen experiment that examined a concept of taxi-out operations that are commonly referred to as surface trajectory-based operation (STBO). This study was built on previous research investigating taxiing from the gate to the runway based on speed and time commands to include speed-based taxiing with bounds. Commercial airline pilots, both current and recently retired, participated in this study at the Human-Centered Systems Lab at NASA Ames Research Center. This study showed that pilots viewed the primary flight display more than when taxiing in the defined condition than the undefined condition. This resulted in more head down time on the primary flight display. Future studies should examine different STBO concepts that prevent more head down time while keeping safety a priority.